Tuesday, August 14

Team Kells profiles – Manx GP

The Manx GP kicks off this weekend and there’s quite an Irish interest in it this year.

Many are newcomers to the event but, not to the track having spent many hours studying the 37-mile circuit as well as taking instruction from ex-racers and local travelling marshals.

Here’s a brief overview on those that are on Team Kells.

Mike Browne – Cork. Currently 2nd in Irish Senior Support Championship

Currently races the Irish Nationals and has had strong finishes and wins this year in Faugheen.

Paul O’Rourke – Skerries. Championship Irish Junior Support

Competes on a Supertwin on the National circuits. Local tracks are Skerries and Killalane.

Barry Sheehan – Cork.  Irish Senior Support Championship leader

Barry Sheehan has won many battles this year and should go well at the Manx. A win at his nearest track in Faugheen and Walderstown earlier this year will only increase his hunger for results at the Isle of Man.

Veronika Hankocyova – Brno, Czech Republic.

Having tackled almost every road circuit across Europe at this stage, Veronika turns her attention to the famous ManxGP. Riding a Supertwin also in the Junior Manx GP.

James Chawke – Limerick. Irish Supersport Championship

A well-known face from the Irish Roads paddock James has entered the Manx GP on his Kawasaki Supersport bike and will also pilot a Paton in the Twins\Lightweight races.

Dave Butler – Dublin. Irish Sidecar & Supertwins Championship

A Supertwin veteran on the Short Circuits, Dave will be competing in the Lightweight Manx. He will also race the ZX6r in the Junior and Senior GP. This will be Dave’s second International this year having raced at Chimay in a sidecar last month.

Thomas Maxwell – Mullingar. Currently 4th in Irish Supertwin Road Championship

Thomas Maxwell has had an exceptional year on the Irish Roads this season on the Supersport and Superbike. Hopefully his run of good form continues over the fortnight on the island.

Paul Fallon – Westmeath. Irish Supersport & Superbike Championship

Fallon adds an R6 to his arensal this year and has scored points in almost every meeting entered.

David Lumsden – Skerries. Supersport and Supertwins

Skerries and Killalane regular will be racing his own machine at the Manx in the Twins race as well as the Junior and Senior GP.

Damian Horan – Athlone. Irish Supersport & Superbike Championship

Another Junior Manx GP entrant is Damian Horan on the GSXR Suzuki exchanging the 600 engine for the 750 for the Senior race.

Words Andy Quinn

Images Andy Quinn/Johnny Sweeney

Monday, August 13

Top ten finishes for Irwin brothers on Thruxton debut

Irwin Racing continued their British Superbike Championship adventure with their longest weekend of the season, as they travelled the massive distance from Kilmacrennan County Donegal to the most southerly venue on the British Superbike Championship calendar, the ultra-fast Thruxton circuit, last weekend (August 3rd - 5th).

Tackling yet another new track both Rhys and Caolán Irwin were looking for more solid performances as they and the team continue their debut season competing at the highest level of British Motorcycle Racing.

The Thruxton track is fast and flowing for most of a lap but also includes some very heavy braking for its slow chicanes, this along with its high grip levels and abrasive surface makes it one of the most technically challenging tracks in the UK. Going there for the first time the team had a lot to learn about gearing, suspension set up and tyre preservation, particularly with the extremely high temperatures recorded over the weekend.

Riding in the Superstock 600 class, Caolán adapted quickly to the new environment and improved his times gradually over the weekend to close the gap to the fastest riders from one and a half seconds in the first session to under a second in the race. A slight step backwards in qualifying left him starting ninth but an improvement in the pre-race warm up put the Oasis Bar and Clean Rubber backed rider back on the front foot.

In the race a good start saw him rise to fifth place, but the difficulties of controlling tyre wear in the heat on the abrasive track surface saw his tyres lose performance in the latter stages, dropping him to ninth. Both rider and team were still happy with this result and the points collected helped the twenty year old maintain his impressive eighth place in the championship.

Rhys Irwin was once again in action on his Motorcycling Ireland Moto3 machine at Thruxton and like older brother Caolán it was his first experience of the venue. The team worked hard all weekend to find a set up to allow him run at the pace of the front runners but struggled to find gearing to suit the very fast and very slow sections of the track. In the end two more top ten finishes, eighth in race one and ninth in race two were salvaged from a difficult weekend.

Rhys and Caolán Irwin head to the more familiar surroundings of Cadwell Park for their next race in two weeks aiming to use their track knowledge to continue their progress towards the front of the field.

Images Jimmy Graham

Wednesday, August 8

Podiums and Points for 109 at Thruxton

It was a solid weekend for Team #109 at Thruxton, with both Eunan McGlinchey and
Kevin Keyes back in action for the Cork based team. Eunan McGlinchey cemented himself
once again as a title challenger in the Dickies Junior Supersport class, scoring a brace of
podium finishes, to retake the series lead. Kevin Keyes struggled for set up throughout the
weekend, but despite his issues he still managed to dig deep in the race and salvage a top
ten result, which as a result maintained his third position in the Pirelli National Superstock
600 championship standings.

McGlinchey got his weekend off to a strong start, finishing second in free practice on
Friday evening, before going one better in qualifying on Saturday, claiming pole position
for the opening race of the weekend.
As the lights went out for the opening Dickies Junior Supersport race of the weekend, it
was an action packed opening number of laps as usual, with Eunan maintaining his
position at the front. As the laps ticked by, there was a five bike battle for the podium,
with positions changing constantly throughout the closing stages, and as the group
entered the final chicane, everyone had their plan of attack, and when the dust settled, it
was a second place finish for Eunan, crossing the line less than half a second behind victor
Elliot Pinson.

As the second race got underway, Eunan lined up in fifth position on the grid, but by the
halfway stage of the race, he had caught the leaders. In the process of making his way
through the field, the Aghadowey rider smashed the lap record, lapping just less than a
second faster than the next quickest rider in the pack.

As the race drew to a close, McGlinchey was locked in a battle with the factory KTM of
Brian Hart, and as the two dragged to the line it was Hart who edged out McGlinchey by
just six hundredths of a second. But with his second runner up finish of the weekend, and
his rivals finishing on and off the podiums throughout the two races, McGlinchey moves
back into the series lead.

Speaking about his weekend at the Hampshire circuit McGlinchey said; “All in all it was a
great weekend, the bike worked absolutely perfect all weekend, and I managed to secure
some solid points which going into the weekend is what I wanted to do.”

“The championship is getting very close at the front, and a big thing for myself is keeping
consistent and scoring solid points each weekend, so I was delighted to come away with
two strong podium finishes and retake my lead in the championship. I would like to say a
massive thank you to the entire Team #109 squad who worked very hard all weekend to
give me a good package, as well as all my personal sponsors who allow me to do what I
do. I really appreciate all of the support, and I’m really looking forward to Silverstone

Kevin Keyes had a solid start to the weekend on Friday morning in the Pirelli National
Superstock 600 class, finishing the opening free practice session in tenth position. Making
a few set up changes in an effort to improve his time and position in free practice two in
the afternoon, Kevin managed to take almost three quarters of a second off his time from
earlier in the day, but remained in tenth positon in the standings.

As qualifying got underway on Saturday afternoon, Keyes struggled with the set up of the
Kawasaki ZX6 in the searing heat of Thruxton, and could only score thirteenth position on
the grid for Sundays race. With no warm up for the class scheduled on Sunday morning,
the Superstock 600 riders were given a third free practice on Saturday evening to test out
any changes before Sundays race.

As Kevin took to the track in the evening sunshine, he broke back into the top ten
following on from a difficult qualifying, finishing the session in ninth position, giving
himself a solid footing which to go into the race the following morning.
As the lights went out for the beginning of the sole Superstock 600 race, Kevin was
making excellent progress, breaking into the top ten in the early stages, and by the
halfway point was in a battle for seventh. However, following some issues as the race
came into the closing stages, Kevin dropped back from the pack, but still managed to
bring the ZX6 home in tenth to score more solid points in the championship, keeping him
inside the top three.

Recapping over a difficult weekend Keyes said; “Thruxton was a very tough weekend for
me as I struggled to get the bike set up I wanted throughout the weekend. After a chat
with my team we made some changes for the race that I was happy with. When we
started the race I felt really comfortable, and felt like we had great pace doing a 1:19.5
lap time straight away, in traffic, almost a full second quicker than I’d gone all weekend,
which was also the third fastest finishing lap time.”

“I felt we could have had a good race, but unfortunately we had an issue, but it will be all
resolved and I’ll be back fighting for Caldwell. Taking the positives we are still holding third
in the championship, it was another top ten finish, and I’m home in the same condition I
went. A big thanks to my team and to all my sponsors.”

Team #109 will be back in action once again at Cadwell Park in a fortnights time, and with
no Dickies Junior Supersport race, it will mean McGlinchey will be absent once again, and
it will be Keyes representing the team solely at the Louth circuit.

Photographs courtesy of James McCann Photography

Sunday, August 5

Richie Ryan lands Leinster 200. Dunlop Master Rounds 13, 14 & 15 - Results and report


The second sidecar race was a tight battle between Derek Lynch, Dylan and Mark Codd in a field of 8 bikes. Derek took the win but it was a drag race for 2nd that Mark Codd won ahead of Dylan. Race 3 saw Derek retire while battling with Dylan, who would go ahead for the win from Mark Codd\Liam Gordon and a podium for Darren Dwyer and C Gordon as the afternoon temperatures rose steadily.


Race 2 in the twins was a tight one between the 2 classes leaving the Supertwin podium with some well earned Production twin riders on it too. Derek Wilson won race 2. Race 3 was re-started after a red flag, ran over 7 laps and Derek Wilson dominated this. Vinny Brennan won Production race 3 from Robert O’Connell in 2nd and Jamie Collins was 3rd.


A smaller field of entrants than normal entered the Principal Insurance Pre-injection races. A red flag decided the result of Race 2 after 8 laps. As with the ruling the result went back to the leaders of the previous lap. Ian Prendergast won the battle from Ivan Oxley and Athy’s Colin Murphy claimed his second podium of the weekend with 3rd. Race 3 was shortened to 10 laps and Ian Prendergast got away first. He would eventually take the win from Kevin Madigan as Ivan Oxley grabbed 3rd place.

Classic Superbikes

Restarted Classic SBK race 2 was run over 8 laps after the red flag incident. Derek Wilson again prevailed on the ZXR750 from Chris Campbell and Robin Heathcote in 3rd. In Race 3, Campbell went one better by winning from Wilson with Heathcote again in 3rd.


Race 2 Supersport Pro and Cup was definitely a combined race with two very separate battles going on. The gap between the two classes is big at the minute with almost one second between them per lap in some cases. Dean McMaster was in a different league this weekend with consistent 55’s. Race 3 had to be re-run after a red flag halted proceedings on lap 7. Again Dean McMaster took the initiative and couldn’t be caught. Cup rider Keelim Ryan upped the ante in the restart and was rewarded with a hard earned podium from Emmett O’Grady in 2nd. 3 wins from 3 for McMaster.


Race 2 was a runaway win for Richie Ryan in SBK pro in blistering heat over 14 laps. Back on form in 2nd was Peter Moloney and Luke Johnston also rode well in the heat to finish 3rd on the BMW S1000rr.The Cup race 2 win went to Jamie O’Keeffe, from Michael Prendergast and 3rd place Chris Campbell. Race 3, the Leinster 200 race was shortened to 12 laps due to time constraints. Peter Moloney got the better start from Richie Ryan, but Ryan passed him back on lap 3 and would go on for the win. James Kelly took a brilliant 3rd place. Chris Campbell topped the podium in the Cup race from Michael Prendergast, with Gary O’Brien taking third.

Young Guns and Junior Cup

Jamie Lyons unbeaten run in the Junior Cup continued this weekend taking the 3 wins. In Race 3 Michael Owen was 2nd and British Talent Cup invitee Oisin Maher was a close 3rd. In the Youngs Guns race 3, Alex Duncan won from 2nd place Karl Lynch and 3rd was Shane Mooney on the Aprilia 125.

B races

Race 2 Superbike B race was won by John Cahill from Alan Fisher. The Supersport B race 2 win went to Anthony O’Carroll. Results for Race 3 weren’t available due to a timing fault.

Words - Andy Quinn
Images - Johnny Sweeney\Andy Quinn

Thursday, August 2

2018 Leinster 100 & 200 - Dunlop Masters Superbike Championship returns to Mondello Park

The 2018 Dunlop Masters Superbike Championship reconvenes at Mondello Park this weekend, August 4th & 5th for the latest instalment of the popular race series. With the Leinster Motor Club in charge the event will include races for the Leinster 100 and Leinster 200 trophies which carry some of the biggest names in Irish Motorcycle Racing.

The Superbike racers will take centre stage as the battle for the 2018 title continues. This weekend while racing for championship points and prize-money they will also have the Leinster 200 trophy to battle for in Sunday afternoon's third and final race of the weekend. Yamaha R1 mounted Richie Ryan, who has dominated the last two events, will be looking to continue his strong form, but he will have Peter Moloney to watch out for as the BMW rider came very close to taking his maiden win last time out.

The Superbike Cup class has been the least predictable race at every Masters round this year having produced six different winners so far. Jamie O'Keefe was the latest rider to pick up his first win last time out, having pushed hard for an overall podium in race three. With eleven different riders having reached the podium this season the total number of winners could easily increase this weekend.

In Supersport, the riders will be chasing the Leinster 100 Trophy in their last race of three, on Sunday afternoon. Before that they will have completed two more championship rounds where the lead battle is likely to continue to be between the Yamaha of Emmet O'Grady and the Triumph of Dean McMaster. Behind these two, Supersport Cup riders Eoin Collins, Keelim Ryan and Kevin Baker should be quick enough to battle hard with the remaining Pro riders to take the final podium place.

The support programme will include Classics, racing on Saturday only, and two days of competition for Pre-Injection, Supertwins and Production Twins, Junior Cup and Young Guns, Sidecars and Classic Superbikes.

All of the information on the fifth Dunlop Masters Superbike Championship event of the season, including the timetable, is available from www.masterssuperbike.ie. Tickets are also available to book on-line at the reduced price of just €12.50, with under sixteen's admitted free.

Word and images - Mondello Park

Wednesday, August 1

Leinster 100/200 Trophy News

Don't forget the Leinster 100 and 200 races this Bank holiday weekend.

Lots of silverware up for grabs especially the Hutchinson trophy which has a lot of very famous names engraved on it.

Mondello Park is taking the entries on line or if you have a problem just ring Gillie in Mondello office or just give me a call. Jackie is on holiday.

Sheila Logan.

Tuesday, July 31

Shane Mooney invited to British Talent Cup Selection Event in Silverstone

12 year old Dublin rider Shane Mooney has been selected to compete in the British Talent Cup next month in Silverstone.

The British Talent Cup is seen as an important stepping stone from National Short Circuit Racing to MotoGP class and participation is by invite only. The selection process begins on August 21st with a track day on the Dorna supplied CBR250r machines around the Silverstone circuit. The results will be made known at the last British Talent Cup race of the year in Valencia. British Talent Cup races are ran on the same weekend as some Eurpoean MotoGP and World Superbike Rounds such is the importance of the series.

Shane is currently competing in Irish Short Circuit racing on a Production Aprilia RS125cc two-stroke machine. With the results so far this year in the Dunlop Tyres Young Guns championship Shane has finished in the points in almost every round and sits in 8th place in the leader board, despite missing the first two race meetings in Kirkistown and Bishopscourt. His most recent meeting in Bishopscourt netted him 39 points in total, finishing the four races in 5th, 6th and 7th over the weekend while taking valuable seconds off his lap times in the process.

Even with the positive progression of racing on Irish circuits, Shane will be in talented company of older riders with experience of the Silverstone track so, nothing is guaranteed. There will be many mentors available on the day to help the riders, some such as Jeremy McWilliams lent a hand to last year’s Irish entries.

Previous Irish invitees to the British Talent Cup include Donegal’s Rhys Irwin, who was successful in selection. He currently races in the UK on the Motorcycling Ireland Honda NSF250 Moto3 bike.

Best of luck Shane, we’ll be keeping an eye out on August 21st!

Words Andy Quinn

Images courtesy of Stephen Higgins – SHIG Photography

Sunday, July 22

McGee's Famous Five in Faugheen 50

Derek McGee went one better than last weekend this afternoon by winning all 5 entered races on the day. 

Beginning with the Open race, McGee went on to take wins in Supersport, Supertwins, Moto3 and ending the day on a huge high by claiming the Grand Final.

The talented competition in the form of Micko Sweeney, Paul Jordan, Brian McCormack and the ever improving Davey Todd, wasn’t enough to challenge the Mullingar Missile today in sweltering conditions over the 5 and 6 laps races.

Racing was delayed due to a non-race related medical issue but, the Faugheen 50 club  ran the meeting like clockwork meaning all racing was complete by 4.30, which is a huge credit to them. It has to be mentioned that all of the Faugheen 50 officials, stewards, marshals and volunteers played an impressive role and added to this marvelous fixture.

The paddock was full, as were the hedges and the meeting went off without incident thankfully. Other winners on the day were Brian Mateer Classic 250, Barry Davidson Classic 350, Richard Ford 1000cc and Davidson again on the 500.

Michael Browne blitzed the Senior Support race from Wayne Sheehan and Liam Chawke. The Junior Support went better for Liam Chawke as he won from Barry Sheehan and 3rd place Stephen Morrison.

Darryl Tweed took the win in the Lightweight Supersport race from Stephen Tobin and Stephen Morrison.

Words and images - Andy Quinn

Tuesday, July 17

Faugheen 50 Road Race – Saturday 21st & Sunday 22nd July 2018

Grids are full, with only limited room in the 125cc, 250cc/400cc Championships and they look fantastic!  It’s almost as if it’s the complete list of Irish Road Racing ranking from whose leading the Championship in each and every class from top to bottom! Practically every racer has confirmed entry. The list is too long for each class to include below, so I have just highlighted those few generally at the top of their classes.

Leading the charge in Faugheen this year in the National classes is Derek McGee,
Derek Sheils, Michael Sweeney, Paul Jordan, Thomas Maxwell, Kevin Fitzpatrick and circuit newcomer Davy Todd and not forgetting Club Members Brian McCormack and Graham Kennedy who will all be battling for the Open, Grand Final and 600cc Championship titles.  Brian McCormack will be riding his newly club sponsored 600cc, the Faugheen 50 600cc, all Club members would like to wish Brian the very best of luck on his new Faugheen machine!   Without exception, the grids for these National classes have Ireland’s top racers in them.  Should be lots of exciting clashes!  The Supertwins/650cc Championship is by far the biggest grid and if everyone turns up, the there will be a non-qualifier/B race.

The Support grids are led by William Hara, Wayne Sheehan, Darragh Burke, John Cahill, Michael Browne, Matt Donaldson and Club member Tommy Heaphy all vying for top positions and Championship points. Again, all those leading their classes from top to bottom will be there.
The Classic racing this year is proving to be an eye catcher with tough battles, with
all the top racers in each class coming to Faugheen, these include Barry Davidson, Ed Manly, Sean Leonard, Richard Ford, Brian Mateer, Philip Shaw, Robert McCrum and Herbie Ronan to name but a few.  

Again, all those leading their respective classes from top to bottom will be there.
The narrow roads of Faugheen are buzzing with activity with the build up to the races
around our fantastic and challenging 2.2 mile circuit. Roads close early, we are hoping to get Newcomers out on the grid around 12noon on Saturday and racing will start at 11am on Sunday. With many of the top Irish road racers competing at this national round of the road racing calendar, spectators will have a weekend of pure speed with riders travelling at speeds in excess of 180 mph on closed public roads with viewing vantage points so close you can see the rider’s eyes as they pass.  Then later you can meet the same riders in the paddock and see how very normal and down to earth they are without their helmet on.

I would like to ask all spectators to please watch the racing in the safe allocated zones and observe the Race Marshals instructions and advice. Viewing points on the circuit are noted in the circuit map inside the Club’s programme.  I would also like to thank all of our sponsors, all officials for attending (we could not run the weekend’s racing without them) and a big thanks to all the racers who have confirmed entry and to all of you, the spectators; we hope you have an enjoyable and safe time watching the racing.